Last week, I taught my first yoga lesson outside of the practice runs we've done in our training program. I have a number of friends who have expressed an interest in yoga and who have either stressful jobs, an athletic lifestyle that includes long-distance running and biking, or both. In other words, people who really need yoga!
I asked one of my friends who fit both categories if she would be willing to be my first guinea pig. I prepared my lesson plan and practiced it a couple of times before arriving at her house, loaded down with equipment.
We got started and by the second pose, I had completely deviated from my notes. I didn't really plan to stray from my plans, but after asking about her physical situation, I realized she would benefit more from poses other than the ones I had planned to focus on.
So, I threw my notes aside and just went with the flow. And it was great! I very much enjoyed being able to give personal, individualized attention but I also enjoyed creating a space where she was able to learn and get what she needed that day.
I enjoyed last week's session so much that I'm planning to try it again, with other friends or even small groups. I guess I always expected there to be a sharp demarcation between being a teacher-trainee and being a teacher, but I feel like I've somehow passed over that imagined boundary and started teaching without even really planning to.
Tonight I am attending a practice teaching session with other fellow teacher trainees, some of whom have also begun trying out their new teaching skills on friends and neighbors. I'm eager to hear what their experience was like and to share my own as we walk together along the path toward becoming full-fledged yoga teachers.